Batten Institute

Batten Institute - Ventures - FAQ

Ventures FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions: Summer 2021

What’s going on with the W. L. Lyons Brown III Innovation Laboratory (i.Lab) at Darden?

Big news here! The previous home of the i.Lab in Darden’s Sponsors Hall (near the Law School) has been removed to make way for the Frank M. Sands, Sr. (MBA ’63) UVA Inn at Darden and Conference Center for Lifelong Learning.

Will there be a new i.Lab at Darden?

Yes! As Darden’s Dean Beardsley has noted to the community, the i.Lab will be relaunched with a new home inside Darden’s main complex, placing it squarely “at the heart of the classroom building.”

This new i.Lab will include flat classroom spaces, shared workspaces, and makerspaces. Construction on the new i.Lab is ongoing with the new Maker Space already complete.

Is there still a summer incubator program?

Yes, absolutely! Our flagship incubator program, which has been offered by the Batten Institute for twenty years, is now two programs, Hoos Venturing and VP(x)2. These programs are open by application to any current student, faculty or staff at the University of Virginia, the College at Wise, and UVA alumni from the past three years.

Are there still venture programs for people unaffiliated with Darden or UVA?

Yes! Catalyst, a long-format accelerator program, provides early-stage startups from anywhere in central Virginia with nine months of venture support—regardless of affiliation with the University. This program is made possible through a unique partnership with (and funding from) the Virginia Initiative for Growth & Opportunity and the economic development offices of the City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County and the University of Virginia.

In addition, VP(x)2 welcomes team applications that include co-founders who are unaffiliated with the University of Virginia (i.e., not current students, faculty, staff, or alumni from the past three years).

As always, many opportunities exist across all of our programs and initiatives for experienced entrepreneurs and other experts to serve as venture mentors and advisors.

What will happen to the classes that have been offered at the iLab?

Every Darden class that had previously been taught in the i.Lab (i.e., IDEA, Venture Velocity, Software Design, etc.) will transition to one of the new flat classrooms (180/190) in Darden’s Classroom Building, where the new i.Lab will be located.

Will Darden students have access to a workshop/makerspace?

Yes - the Maker Space is now complete. There are also more than15 workshop/makerspaces across Grounds. These facilities offer resources such as fabrication tools, 3D printers, and laser cutters. See MakerGrounds @ UVA for more information.

Will the new i.Lab location have coffee? Food?

Yes. The i.Lab’s new location in the Darden Classroom Building is proximate to Café 67, the Abbott Center Dining Room, 24/7 vending services in Saunders Hall, and “First Coffee” in the PepsiCo Forum. 

If you have additional questions, please feel free to reach out to Sean Carr, Executive Director, Batten Institute, UVA Darden School of Business.